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  1. 2016-08-09

    Real-time depth camera tracking with CAD models and ICP

    In recent years, depth cameras have been widely utilized in camera tracking for augmented and mixed reality. Many of the studies focus on the methods that generate the reference model simultaneously with the tracking and allow operation in unprepared environments. However, methods that rely on predefined CAD models have their advantages. In such methods, the measurement errors are not accumulated to the model, they are tolerant to inaccurate initialization, and the tracking is always performed directly in reference model's coordinate system. In this paper, we present a method for tracking a depth camera with existing CAD models and the Iterative Closest Point (ICP) algorithm. In our approach, we render the CAD model using the latest pose estimate and construct a point cloud from the corresponding depth map. We construct another point cloud from currently captured depth frame, and find the incremental change in the camera pose by aligning the point clouds. We utilize a GPGPU-based implementation of the ICP which efficiently uses all the depth data in the process. The method runs in real-time, it is robust for outliers, and it does not require any preprocessing of the CAD models. We evaluated the approach using the Kinect depth sensor, and compared the results to a 2D edge-based method, to a depth-based SLAM method, and to the ground truth. The results show that the approach is more stable compared to the edge-based method and it suffers less from drift compared to the depth-based SLAM.

    Journal of Virtual Reality and Broadcasting, 13(2016), no. 1.

  1. 2017-01-19

    A Comprehensive Framework for Evaluation of Stereo Correspondence Solutions in Immersive Augmented and Virtual Realities

    In this article, a comprehensive approach for the evaluation of hardware and software solutions to support stereo vision and depth-dependent interactions based on the specific requirements of the human visual system within the context of augmented reality applications is presented. To evaluate stereo correspondence solutions in software, we present an evaluation model that integrates existing metrics of stereo correspondence algorithms with additional metrics that consider human factors that are relevant in the context of outdoor augmented reality systems. Our model provides modified metrics of stereoacuity, average outliers, disparity error, and processing time. These metrics have been modified to provide more relevant information with respect to the target application. We illustrate how this model can be used to evaluate two stereo correspondence methods: the OpenCV implementation of the semi-global block matching, also known as SGBM, which is a modified version of the semi-global matching by Hirschmuller; and ADCensusB, our implementation of ADCensus, by Mei et al.. To test these methods, we use a sample of fifty-two image pairs selected from the Kitti stereo dataset, which depicts many situations typical of outdoor scenery. Further on, we present an analysis of the effect and the trade-off of the post processing steps in the stereo algorithms between the accuracy of the results and performance. Experimental results show that our proposed model can provide a more detailed evaluation of both algorithms. To evaluate the hardware solutions, we use the characteristics of the human visual system as a baseline to characterize the state-of-the-art in equipment designed to support interactions within immersive augmented and virtual reality systems. The analysis suggests that current hardware developments have not yet reached the point where their characteristics adequately match the capabilities of the human visual system and serves as a reference point as to what are the desirable characteristics of such systems.

    Journal of Virtual Reality and Broadcasting, 13(2016), no. 2.

EuroVR 2015
  1. 2017-02-28

    Presenting a Holistic Framework for Scalable, Marker-less Motion Capturing: Skeletal Tracking Performance Analysis, Sensor Fusion Algorithms and Usage in Automotive Industry

    Even though there is promising technological progress, input is currently still one of virtual reality's biggest issues. Off-the-shelf depth cameras have the potential to resolve these tracking problems. These sensors have become common in several application areas due to their availability and affordability. However, various applications in industry and research still require large-scale tracking systems e.g. for interaction with virtual environments. As single depth-cameras have limited performance in this context, we propose a novel set of methods for multiple depth-camera registration and heuristic-based sensor fusion using skeletal tracking. An in-depth accuracy analysis of Kinect v2 skeletal tracking is presented in which a robot moves a mannequin for accurate, reproducible motion paths. Based on the results of this evaluation, a distributed and service-oriented marker-less tracking system consisting of multiple Kinect v2 sensors is developed for real-time interaction with virtual environments. Evaluation shows that this approach helps in increasing tracking areas, resolving occlusions and improving human posture analysis. Additionally, an advanced error prediction model is proposed to further improve skeletal tracking results. The overall system is evaluated by using it for realistic ergonomic assessments in automotive production verification workshops. It is shown that performance and applicability of the system is suitable for the use in automotive industry and may replace conventional high-end marker-based systems partially in this domain.

    Journal of Virtual Reality and Broadcasting, 13(2016), no. 3.